On 5 September at the 2014 IFA Conference in Berlin, Motorola announced the launch of its smartwatch—the Moto 360—in India. The Moto 360, promoted as “the best looking smartwatch thus far” available in the market, becomes available on Friday afternoon for purchase on online retailer Flipkart.
In the US, the Moto 360 is available online on BestBuy in two variants—$249 with a leather band and a soon-to-be available $299 model with a stainless steel band. In India, Moto 360 has been priced at Rs.17,999, making it the most expensive smartwatch in the market.
The Moto 360 is powered by Android Wear, Google Inc.’s operating platform for smartwatches and other wearables. While the Moto 360 is intended to be a wearable by design and purpose, where it might do much more is through its Google Now integration, which essentially lets users communicate with the device through voice, with the user not even required to touch his phone or the wearable device. The smartphone is compatible with any device that runs on Android 4.3 or above.
From a design point of view, what sets the Moto 360 apart is that it is the first round Android smartwatch, matching the looks of a traditional wristwatch. The first smartwatches to hit the market—LG G Watch and Samsung Gear Live—were square. In the same event, one of Android Wear’s earliest partners—LG also announced its round smartwatch—the LG G Watch R.
rThe Moto 360 has a 1.56-inch LCD display protected by Gorilla Glass 3. The smartwatch runs on an OMAP3 processor with 512MB RAM. It also offers 4 GB of internal storage. The smartwatch also supports wireless charging, and is water resistant.
Motorola, now a Google-owned company, formed an exclusive tie-up with Flipkart to sell its products and met with phenomenal success. The Moto G, priced at Rs.13,999, was made available for sale in February 2014, with all units of its 16 GB edition sold out within 15 minutes. A month later, it introduced a high-end variant—the Moto X, priced at Rs.23,999 - through the same route. However, one of its biggest successes in India came through the Moto E, its low-end variant, costing Rs.6,999, when all units were repeatedly sold out in a matter of seconds whenever made available.
There are other smartwatches available in the market. The Sony Smartwatch is priced at Rs.14,990, while the Samsung Gear Live is priced at Rs.15,990. Last month, Apple Inc. announced the launch of its smartwatch—the iWatch, its first entry into the wearables market. It is expected to be released sometime in 2015.